Through years of hearing people talk about their zodiac signs and how they do or do not identify with them, the main complaint heard is that their sign does not really represent them. This, as it turns out, is because there are 23 other parts of the birth chart of which one’s sun sign is a very small part. There are relatively simple ways to find out about one person’s birth chart, but it can be important if you want to see the iceberg beneath the water.
Well truthfully, this is not important unless you want it to be. Astrology is a sort of cosmic self-help, similar to the way that Meyers-Briggs may help you to understand how to react to your INFJ friend when they get quiet and will not tell you what is wrong. Many people turn away from the zodiac not only because they do not identify with the sign they have, but because they believe astrology tries to tell them who they are.
The fact is, you do not change the makeup of a leaf by identifying chlorophyll. What astrology may be able to tell you is everything you already know, but may not have words for yet.
People all over the world are “believers” in astrology, but astrology is extremely old. There are theories that date to the beginning of our present charts around 8,000 B.C.E. developed by the Egyptians on a large stone carving on the ceiling of a chapel dedicated to Osiris.
Of course, many people have accessed and edited the zodiac since then, including the Greco-Romans who were responsible for assigning iconography, or representative images, to Sagittarius and Capricorn.
The fact is that like our very history as a planet, the origins of many of our systems are very ambiguous and if we are looking for a more concrete answer as to where this came from, along with evidence, we are better off trying to prove Bill Clinton innocent. But it is definitely fun to look at.
Margaret Neumann, a UNCA freshman, indulged in a little experiment for the sake of science.
We took out her laptop, Googled “birth chart calculator” and put in her birthday, birth place and time, which gave us her chart.
The common birth chart has 24 sections. The first 12 tell where the planets (and a couple of asteroids) were placed at the time of your birth by coordinates in relation to the earth and relative to the location in which you were born. Neumann knew she was an Aries, but she did not know she had a Leo moon sign. The site we used claimed that Leos need a lot of love and care and can be bossy when it comes to people they are closest to. Neumann was at first upset by this, but admitted there was some truth to it.
Just because your birth chart says something about you that you consider negative does not mean it is. Bossiness can be really good for directing someone who lacks initiative or pleasing someone they care about. Neumann’s chart also placed her sun and moon sign in a trine meaning her emotions (moon) and her personal identity (sun) are in harmony. It is said having this in your chart makes you laid-back and relaxed as a person and can influence one to be very caring and warm hearted naturally.
“I’m interested now,” Neumann said. “That’s all true.”
This is by no means an attempt to persuade the masses to live their lives astrologically, only to encourage those already interested in astrology to further explore it.
Nifemi Ogunro, a recent Appalachian State University graduate, already uses it in her life. When asked about her chart, she excitedly exclaimed that she has already completed the whole thing.
“I was in college when I did my full chart,” Ogunro said. “ I’m a Cancer with an Aquarius moon and Scorpio rising sign. Knowing not only what your sun and moon are, but their elements will help you better identify why you respond to things a certain way. It just makes things specific.”
Astrology does not explain yourself to you. It is very similar to when a therapist asks, “Are you aware that this may come from your tendency to __?” You do not have to listen to your therapist, but it cannot hurt to try.
I am a Cancer with an Aquarius moon sign and a Sagittarius rising sign. Your rising sign is how people view you when they meet you. It is conflicting, but rounding. I am a nurturing person and have many emotions that could very well run rampant if not for my Aquarius moon sign. This creates a very analytical view of my feelings and the things that affect me so that in my quiet moments, I am thinking about a logical way to respond to a situation for the best outcome for everyone involved.
Both of these may create a sullen nature if not for my Sagittarius rising sign, which makes me almost annoyingly idealistic. It is almost like a childlike coating over the melancholy poet which makes me look to the past as a lesson and the future as a chance to confidently affect my future and that of others positively.
Astrology might help if you feel you are always fighting yourself to do what you really want. If not, then you can always head to the career center and take your Myers-Briggs personality test. We all need a way to process the world and our reactions to it. Astrology is simply a fun avenue you could take.